J. Brent Bill: Beauty, Truth, Life, and Love — and Holy Silence (Part Two)

For our latest “Encountering Silence field recording,” Cassidy Hall visits the farm of Indiana Quaker author J. Brent Bill for a conversation about silence and other essential elements of life. This is part two of a two-part episode; click here to listen to part one.

Cassidy Hall and J. Brent Bill

J. Brent Bill is a Quaker minister, retreat leader, and photographer. He’s written more than twenty books, including Holy Silence: The Gift of Quaker Spirituality and Beauty, Truth, Life, and Love: Four Essentials for the Abundant Life. He has served as a local church pastor, denominational executive, seminary faculty member, and go-kart track operator. He lives on Ploughshares Farm, which is forty acres of former farmland being reclaimed to tall grass prairie and native hardwood forest.

Finding rhythms of silence throughout our days, our ordinary day, really returns us to center, returns us to God, and keeps us centered. — J. Brent Bill

Portrait of J. Brent Bill in coffee, by Chris Hagebak

In writing, especially, I need the centeredness of silence, especially in the editing stages, to say ‘Is this the right word? What am I conveying here, and am I conveying it in such a way that it can be heard? And the only way I can do that is to look at the words in silence. And I do regard my writing as a form of worship, in an exploration, too, in worship of where God is leading me. — J. Brent Bill

Some of the resources and authors we mention in these episodes:

Episode 86: Beauty, Truth, Life, Love — and Holy Silence: A Conversation with J. Brent Bill (Part Two)
Hosted by: Cassidy Hall
Date Recorded: December 3, 2019

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Carl McColman
Author of Befriending Silence, The Big Book of Christian Mysticism, Answering the Contemplative Call, and other books. Retreat leader. Speaker. Professed Lay Cistercian.